COVID-19 and our democracy

In times of crisis, civic participation becomes more crucial -- not less. Let's work together to make sure this public health emergency does not disenfranchise anyone.

A message from Common Cause President Karen Hobart-Flynn:

If you’re like me, you’re worried about what the ongoing situation with COVID-19 will mean for our communities and for our democracy. I wanted to let you know how Common Cause is advocating for our democracy in this time, and how you can help.

In order to slow the spread of the virus, many businesses and organizations — including Common Cause’s offices — are shifting to telework, canceling events, and changing plans. And state governments are working through how their legislative sessions and primary elections in the coming months will be affected.

Common Cause is actively working with state governments, and watchdogging how changes will impact voters, and evaluating how to make sure no one is disenfranchised by this public health crisis.

I want you to remember that democracy is something that we all do together. Civic engagement isn’t just still possible in times like these — in fact, it’s even more necessary. Common Cause is still here — and we’ll stay connected with you over phone, email, and social media.

And as I write, our team is strategizing with state governments and our Election Protection partners — to make sure we can keep the 866-OUR-VOTE voter assistance hotline live on upcoming primary election days, and ensure that voters are able to cast their ballots without disruption.

Here’s how you can do your part to protect democracy during this time:

– Listen to medical experts like the Center for Disease Control and state health departments — and if you are sharing information, make sure it’s coming from a trusted source.

– Familiarize yourself with the vote-by-mail rules for your state — you can find yours here.

– Check with your state’s Secretary of State for further updates on how elections will be affected.

You can also sign up to receive text messages on voting and democracy issues from Common Cause >>

This is a public health and economic crisis that requires our cooperation, as a nation and as a world. That means listening to public health experts and following their recommendations — to ensure the safety of ourselves and our neighbors.

It also means remaining vigilant against those who would seek to exploit this situation for their own gain — by spreading disinformation or stoking needless panic and division. And, it means making sure the people who are most at-risk — seniors, hourly wage workers, people with disabilities, and others — can count on their community’s support in this moment.

Thanks for all you do,

Karen Hobert Flynn, President
and the team at Common Cause